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Poster: RebMorton Date: Jul 12, 2013 3:40pm
Forum: radioprograms Subject: Rights Clearinance WKNR Detroit?

I am working on a new documentary tv series about the 1950's and 1960's for the Discovery Network and trying to figure out the rights situation for radio broadcasts under the WW11 Archive:

I am not interested in the music -just the news portions so we can
provide an authentic background sound in various scenes.

Specifically, I want to inquire about the WKNR Detroit – Keener 13 (which is now Fresh 100 owned by Clear Channel).

The WKNR links are on the right sight side of the screen on RadioNews and I am interested in #37 -#40; #44; #45; #52; #70; #82.

WKNR has been dark for years and the station is now Fresh 100. Clear Channel. The new station owner has no jurisdiction over the now closed WKNR. So I believe the news portion on WKNR might be public domain.

Would anybody be able to help me clarify this?

Thanks for your time and consideration!

Rebecca Morton
Xcon Productions

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Poster: WW2Archive Date: Sep 3, 2013 9:44pm
Forum: radioprograms Subject: Re: Rights Clearinance WKNR Detroit?

I spoke to someone who is quite an expert on radio matters. She said

"In short, it's probably OK-- but here's what I believe is the case:

The folks on the audio were employees of Mrs. Fred Knorr (Nellie, his widow, who owned the stations). She would have full copyright as their employer. But she's no longer with us, and the material has not been used in many years. Due to abandonment alone, the airchecks themselves, are probably fair game. BUT.. I believe some of the stuff you used comes from one of the record albums they pressed to commemorate the various years. (1965) If that is the case, it's possible (though not at all likely) that someone holds a copyright to the album. If it were me, and I knew the stuff came from an album, I'd want to see the copyright on it. If it all belongs to Neille (Knorr Broadcasting), it's probably in the clear with no issues. (Even if someone else does hold an interest, it is probably still in the clear.)

I've run into many issues where material is essentially abandoned (which this is), and in some cases I've never been able to track down continuing ownership, as whomever got the rights (usually in the initial sale transfer) didn't even realize, or care, that they had them.

Abandonment will put something in the public domain, but is it abandoned? I'm no lawyer, but in this case I believe it is. (What would have to happen for someone to go after Discovery would be for them to not only prove the ownership claim, but also that they were damaged-- i.e. that the "residual goodwill" of the copyright/trademark/original product was an asset being diluted by the new use.) Normally I'd just say go for it-- but as anyone can come after someone else for any reason (thus driving up legal costs, even when a summary judgment is granted), the producer may want to run it by an intellectual property rights lawyer, choosing wisely whom to consult as some lawyers are just deal killers.

Hope that helps. Feel free to pass it on."